52 Tiny Changes Archive
Change is so huge, so big, so time-consuming. It is much
easier to keep the status quo.
Does it have to be that way? How about if we change just
a little at a time? We are not remaking your whole life
at once. If you do one tiny change a week, by the end of
the year you will have a better, more vibrant life. Another
positive is with small changes, you have a much better chance
at keeping your new habits.
For a free list of the 52 tiny changes, send an e-mail
with 52 changes in the subject line. Or come here
each week for a new change and some steps to help you along
Tiny Change #21 Whenever you
feel yourself getting tense, slow down and breathe
How many times have you been working
on something and getting more and more frustrated? Nothing
seems to be flowing. You are getting uptight. But, you
keep plowing through. You figure if you just keep going
harder at this project, it will work out.
Try an experiment. Next time you start
feeling frustrated and tense, stop. Take a few
deep breaths. Slow down your mind till you are more
relaxed. Try to catch yourself when you first start
feeling tense, so you can relax quicker.
Now you can ask yourself some questions.
"How am I feeling right now?"
"What do I need to feel better?"
"What is the present situation?"
"What is good about this situation?"
"What would make this work better?"
"What am I missing?"
"Would it help to collaborate with someone else?"
"Do I have all the information I need?"
"Does this need to be broken down into smaller
"Will this situation matter in a month?"
"What is the real reason for my frustration? Am
I worried someone will find me incompetent or unintelligent?"
"Do I need to change my thinking pattern here?"
You don't need to ask yourself each
of these questions every time. Each pause gives you
a chance to ask yourself questions that are important
to your particular stressor. It is helpful to ask about
the present situation and what you can do to improve
it. Even if it just changing your mind set. Instead
of being annoyed at being stuck in traffic, acknowledge
that you can't do anything about it and enjoy a moment
of quiet in the car from your hectic day.
We all get these frustrations throughout
the day. If we just stop, breathe and think we may find
ways to make these moments better. Maybe you will discover
you need a break to walk around the block. Maybe you
realize you are stuck and need to ask for help. You
might decide you need to restructure your time and priorities.
Or you find once you relax, that the answer to your
problem pops into your head.
To remind yourself to stop, breathe
and think, you might want to put a message on your computer
desk, on your to do list or your dashboard. You might
also want to print out a list of questions to ask yourself
when you are under stress, that you can carry with you.